It’s my final Masterpiece Monday featuring a princess I’ve never featured before! Technically I’ve already done one Frozen post, but that time I focused more on Elsa. I thought it was only fair that Anna get her own separate post. While she didn’t go through as many physical changes in design as her sister did, there were plenty of changes made to Anna’s personality and journey during Frozen‘s chaotic development process.These character design drawings, done by Scott Watanabe, reveal a little bit about one of the rejected script’s for the film and Anna’s unusual role within it.Of course, do keep in mind that much like Tangled, the details of the many rejected plots for Frozen are kept pretty secret, so my information is pieced together from a lot of bits and pieces uncovered through a lot of difficult searching.
These two drawings are actually designs for Anna’s dress for her wedding to Hans, which explains the fancy crown and the bouquet. In this version of the film, Anna would have knownabout Elsa’s ice powers and they would have caused a rift between the two sisters. The people of Arendelle would have feared and ostracized Elsa because of her powers, while kind and normal Anna would have been beloved by all. This would have caused Elsa to hate her sister, until she eventually fled the kingdom and created her ice palace, leaving Anna alone to become queen. Eventually, Anna would have met and become engaged to Hans, who she naively believed she was in love with. In the hopes of patching things up with Elsa, Anna would have invited her to her wedding, only for Elsa to come with an army of snowmen, destroy everything, and kidnap her sister. Elsa would have taken Anna to her ice palace, where she would have sang her villain song “Cool with Me” (you can read the lyrics here). At the end of the song, Elsa would have purposely frozen Anna’s heart out of jealousy and a desire to make her sister feel as icy and unloved as she does. Anna then would have spent the rest of the film trying to get back to Hans to unfreeze her heart, while Elsa tried to stop her, until eventually Anna realized that Kristoff was her actual true love and Elsa would have been somehow redeemed. The story that these wedding dress designs were created for would have been very different than what made it onto the screen, but clearly some of the key elements were already there.
Anna’s dress does not look much like a typical fairy tale wedding dress. That’s because it’s actually based on traditional Norwegian wedding dresses, which are nothing like what brides typically wear in America. Frozen‘s visual development artists did a lot of research on traditional Norwegian culture, even going on a research trip to Norway, where they sketched and photographed many aspects of the culture. The traditional clothing they saw especially inspired them, and many of their early concept sketches of Anna showed her in very realistic traditional dress. Over time her clothing became a little more simplified and cutesy to match the classic Disney Princess look, but they still retained some Scandinavian elements.. Even the traditional Norwegian wedding crown Anna wears in these drawings made it into Frozen Fever, as Anna’s birthday crown.
Thanks to this concept art of Anna in different wedding dresses, you now know a little bit about another discarded plot for Frozen and about Anna’s design links to Norwegian culture. Hope you enjoyed.